The Manx Motorcycle Club and the gov have this morning outlined their plans for the ‘new look’ Manx Grand Prix.
The changes follow a review undertaken by both organisations earlier this year, working closely with other stakeholders critical to the delivery of the event including the TT Marshals Association, Manx Road Racing Medical Services and ACU Events Ltd.
Designed to ensure the long-term sustainability of the MGP, which will celebrate its centenary in 2023, the changes include the event becoming a nine day festival and brings to an end the use of the Classic TT brand.
What Will We See?
While the Classic TT designation is gone, the bikes which are so loved by spectators remain as part of the five race programme featuring modern and classic bikes all held under the MGP banner.
The MGP races for modern machinery will be more closely aligned to the TT Races, with the Senior and Junior Races, for Supersport and Supertwin machines respectively, operating to similar (but not identical) specifications as seen at the TT, giving riders the opportunity to achieve their goals on the TT course.
The Classic Manx Grand Prix races will build on the Island’s reputation for high profile classic motorcycle racing, with the world’s best teams and many of the leading TT competitors expected to take part.
Held over the nine days from Sunday August 21 to the Bank Holiday on August 29, the reduction from 14 days will help ensure sufficient marshalling for qualifying and races as well as cutting the number of road closures and cost to taxpayers.
The MGP will also follow the TT Races by adopting the new Safety Management System being introduced for racing on the Mountain Course, which is aimed at driving safety performance across all areas of the events.
In a further development, the MMCC have also appointed ACU Events Ltd as race organiser, who have fulfilled the same role at the TT Races since 2008. The MMCC will retain ownership of the MGP brand and lead the administrative delivery of the event, whilst the DfE will continue to provide the funding required to stage the event, provision of facilities, infrastructure and logistics, in addition to assuming responsibility for event marketing and promotion.
A spokesperson from the MMCC said: ‘Having continually evolved since its inception in 1923, these latest set of developments announced today for the MGP mark an exciting, new chapter for the famous event. Ensuring its long-term sustainability, we have acted not only to address the challenges that the event faces, but also to inject new energy into both the look of the event, to which we believe will lead us to a successful future that stretches long beyond the centenary event in 2023.’
Rob Callister, Political Member with responsibility for tourism and motorsport, added: ‘‘Having played an important role in our visitor economy for almost 100 years, I greatly welcome the developments announced today with regards to the MGP. ‘This key event contributes a significant £7.1m to the wider Manx economy and, when combined with the Isle of Man TT Races, accounts for £44m of visitor spending, which could be supporting up to 815 jobs in the island’s economy. It was therefore crucial that, together with the MMCC, we undertook this review to identify ways that can help us to ensure the long-term sustainability of the event ahead of its centenary in 2023. As the event enters a new and exciting phase, working alongside all key delivery partners, we are committed to ensuring its future success, supporting the MMCC and the other organisations involved for many years to come.’
What Was Considered?
Factors considered as part of the review included:
- Analysis of the delivery costs and the benefits to the local economy
- The impact road closures required to stage the event had on residents and businesses
- Safety risk management
- The provision of sufficient marshalling cover for the full event duration
- Fan, media and industry relevance, and the continuous need to attract new fan